The first ever long distance road trip in an auto was made by a woman!

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The first ever long distance road trip in an auto was made by a woman!

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The first-ever, constructed in 1885 Charles Benz, the German inventor. On January, 29th, 1886 he took out the patent for the car, and on July, 3rd, 1886 on Ringshtrasse in Mannheim for the first time showed the car to general public. Benz’s car had three bicycle wheels. On the car the one-cylinder internal combustion engine by a working volume of 954 cm³ has been established. Real capacity of this car — 0,9 h.p. at 400 turns in a minute though in the patent for the invention 2/3 horse powers are specified at 250 turns. This engine had considerable weight (about 100 kg). Maximum speed is 13 kilometers per hour. The car has been patented on November 2, 1886 (patent  No. DRP 37435), passed tests for roads, and in 1887 participated in the Parisian exhibition. Since 1888 Benz’s cars have been exposed on sale, but buyers were not.

Position was rescued by Benz’s wife – Bertha who and took earlier active part in work of the husband. As would tell now – made the advertising action. In August, 1888 Berta Benz together with sons of 15 and 13 years without the knowledge of Charles made on it a trip to the next city distance of 106 km. Although the ostensible purpose of the trip was to visit her mother, Bertha Benz had other motives: to prove her husband—who had failed to consider marketing his invention adequately—that the automobile they both heavily invested in, would become a financial success once it was shown to be useful to the general public; and to give her husband the confidence that his constructions had a future.

On the way, she solved numerous problems. She had to find ligroin as a fuel, which was available only at apothecary shops so she stopped in Wiesloch at the city pharmacy to purchase the fuel. A blacksmith had to help mend a chain at one point. Brakes needed to be repaired, in doing so Bertha Benz invented brake lining. She also had to use a long, straight hairpin to clean a fuel pipe, which had become blocked, and to insulate a wire with a garter. She left Mannheim around dawn and reached Pforzheim somewhat after dusk. On road people ran together crowds to take a look at such miracle. About this distant automobile race all Germany learn’t. And the press turned a close attention not only on travel, but also on Charles Benz’s car. From now on its way to glory and success also began.

The replica of this car can be seen at Riga Motor Museum: